CWG case: Trial against Kalmadi, 9 others to commence on Wednesday
New Delhi: Trial in a Commonwealth Games related case involving Suresh Kalmadi and nine others will commence on Wednesday in a Delhi court which had invoked charges of criminal conspiracy, forgery, cheating and other offences against them entailing maximum punishment of life term.
Special CBI Judge Ravinder Kaur had on February 4 framed charges against Kalmadi, who was sacked as CWG Organising Committee (OC) chairman, and other accused including OC Secretary General Lalit Bhanot for the offences punishable under the IPC and Prevention of Corruption Act for allegedly causing a loss of over Rs 90 crore to the exchequer.
The court had fixed February 20 for commencement of recording of evidence in the case related to alleged "illegal" awarding of a contract to install Timing, Scoring and Results (TSR) system for the 2010 CWG to Swiss Timing at inflated rates and had said that the trial will be held on day-to-day basis barring Monday and Friday.
All the accused were charged under various sections of the IPC, including section 467 (forgery of a valuable security), which entails life term as maximum punishment.
The court had framed substantive charge under section 13 (2) read with section 13(1)(d) (criminal misconduct by public servants) of the Prevention of Corruption Act against Kalmadi.
Kalmadi will also face trial for offences under section 120-B (criminal conspiracy) read with sections 420 (cheating), 467, 468 (forgery for the purpose of cheating),471 (using as genuine a forged document) and 506 (criminal intimidation).
Besides these, Kalmadi and other accused have also been charged for offences under sections 201 (causing disappearance of evidence) and 511 (attempting to commit offences punishable with imprisonment for life) of the IPC.
After framing of charges, all the accused had pleaded not guilty and had claimed trial in the case.
The others who will face trial in the case are OC`s former Director General V K Verma, former Director General (Procurement) Surjit Lal, former Joint Director General (Sports) A S V Prasad and former Treasurer M Jayachandran. They are no more associated with the sporting body.
Apart from the six, promoters of two construction firms - P D Arya and A K Madan of Faridabad-based Gem International and A K Reddy of Hyderabad-based AKR Constructions are also accused in the case. AKR Constructions is also an accused in the case.
The court had framed substantial charges of misusing official position against the six former OC officials, who were public servants.
Apart from the charges under the Prevention of Corruption Act, it had framed substantive charges under sections 468 and 471 of the IPC against Bhanot and Prasad.
The court, while framing charges, had observed that Swiss Timing was selected on a "nomination basis" and false expression of interest was published to keep others away and the request for proposal was made restrictive.
It also said that MSL Spain, whose much lower bid of Rs 62 crore for TSR system was rejected by OC, was "fraudulently disqualified" at the pre-qualification stage resulting in a "single tender situation".
Regarding Swiss Timing Omega, which was also an accused in the case, the court had said that as the firm, which was allegedly awarded the contract at exorbitant rates, is not appearing in the court despite proper service of summons and its "trial is separated."
During the arguments on charges, CBI counsel V K Sharma had argued that Kalmadi and others had decided to award the contract for installing TSR system for the CWG to Swiss Timing even before the firm had bid for it.
Kalmadi`s counsel, however, had argued that the facts given in the CBI`s charge sheet were contrary to the documents which the agency had filed in the court.